Yes, you can make amazing ice cream without a cow in sight. There are lots of different ingredients to experiment with (coconut milk, frozen bananas, avocado, soy or almond milk), and you can do it with or without an ice cream maker (frozen bananas are your new best friend if you don't have one). Here are a few basic tips to keep in mind:
• Fat helps you get the right creamy texture. That's what makes coconut milk such a perfect substitute for whole milk and cream. Give it a shot, even if you think you don't love coconut; the flavor is pretty subtle, especially if you mix it with fruit, chocolate, etc.
• Thickeners like corn starch and arrowroot (like in this basic coconut ice cream recipe) can also help make a creamier texture.
• Make sure any sweetener you add is in syrup/liquid form, or it'll cause crystals to form.
• Make sure all your ingredients are as cold as they can be pre-freezing/blending. That'll help everything combine without starting to melt too much, which can make for a grainy final product.